The Utah Volleyball team is on an amazing run, and once again took down a ranked team at the Jon M. Huntsman Center. The Utes beat the No. 2-ranked Washington Huskies in five sets, and extended their winning streak to four matches.
Utah picked up a win against a Top 10-ranked team for the first time since downing No. 7 Colorado State back on Oct. 15, 2004, and it marks the first win over a Top five-ranked team since the program’s upset over No. 1 Stanford back on Sept. 5, 2000.
Utah got off to a quick lead in the first set, as they led Washington 9-3. The Huskies battled back, but couldn't close the gap, as senior Bailey Bateman finished off with a kill, giving the Utes the set 25-19.
The second set would belong to the Huskies. The Utes took the lead early, but a 4-0 run in the middle of the set put Washington on top 14-13. Both teams traded points until the Huskies finished off the set breaking 23-23 tie with the final two points, and 25-23 set to even up the match.
The third set also belonged to No. 2 Washington. The Utes had a one point lead a few times in the match, but the Huskies were able to close out the Utes with a 25-20 set win, and a 2-1 lead in the match.
With their backs against the wall, it did not look good in the fourth set, when the Utes trailed 11-6. A few runs, and some good play by senior Mackenzie Moea'i, senior Kalee Kirby, and freshman Adora Anae, brought the Utes back, and finally tied up the match at 19-19. The Utes took the hard fought set with kills by Moea'i, Kirby, and then Anae to take the set 27-25.
Again Washington looked determined to take the match when they jumped out to a 10-7. Utah's team was also determined to not let that happen, and went on a 4-1 run, and tied up the match. Then kills by Anae, senior Shelby Dalton, freshman Carly Trueman, and senior Bailey Bateman helped the Utes close out the fifth set at 15-13 for a 3-2 match victory.
Senior Chelsey Schofield-Olsen led the Utes on the night with 14 of the team's 74 kills, and Bateman, Dalton, Anae, and Moea'l all finished with double-digits in kills. Kirby collected a career-high 38 assists, and she too recorded a double-double with 16 digs on the evening. Moea’i, who is playing for the injured freshman Eliza Katoa, racked up one of the best performances of the season with a team-high .444 hitting.
The win gives Utah a 17-11 record and 7-10 in the Pac 12. Their late season push has put them within reach of post season play. Quality wins in the last few matches. over ranked competition, have helped that cause.
The Utes return to action next Friday, Nov. 21 against No. 1 Stanford in Palo Alto, Calif., and will then head over to Berkeley to face Cal on Sunday, Nov. 23.